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Hello everyone. I new to these boards so forgive me if this topic has been done to death. I have an 7 month old BC named Annie. I have been feeding her Science Diet puppy food since I got her at 8 weeks. I recently went to Petsmart to purchase Dogfood and cat food and walked out with an $80.00 dollar bill. Now don't get me wrong. I am willing to pay that to feed Annie (and Bandit my mother in laws Shitzu) if the food is that much better than other foods out there. I recently attended a clinic on "How Dogs think" at a school here that recommends Purina and feeds it to all boarded dogs. What do you feed your dog and why. I Science Diet better than other foods or is there a better alternative?

 

Nestor and Annie the Disk Dog

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Science Diet and Purina are NOT good foods. I personally would NEVER feed either of them to my dogs. There are some great articles on excellent dog foods and nutrition, unfortunately I am at work and don't have the links handy. I'm sure others will have links for you.

 

As a general rule, stay away from any brand that you can buy at a grocery store. Science diet, even though not available at grocery stores, has nasty preservatives and lots of fillers.

 

I feed my dogs California Natural. They also get veggies, yogurt, etc. and some fresh home cooked meals.

 

Other foods that I like are Innova and Wellness.

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If you're going to Petsmart, look at their own brand (Authority?) - the Lamb & Rice chunks. It has no cornmeal and has the closest to the fat and protein percentages I got from the folks on this board. (Try searching the archives for the details.)

 

There are sure other foods I've heard of on this board that are better. But I can't find them around here. And this stuff is quite reasonablely priced.

 

Fergie gets 3/4 cup of kibble morning and evening. Twice a week - the days we eat eggs for breakfast - we feel guilty and give her a half can of chunky canned food with her dinner. Boy, does she know when it's Wednesday or Saturday!

 

She gets lots of tomato because we grow those and she gets all the bits we cut off. She also loves all kinds of fruit, radishes, zucchini and cuke sliced thin, peppers, and any cheese she can get. She licks bread bowls. And, right now, she has begun Fergie's Fall Feast - gobbling up all the wild persimmons that she can find.

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Actually, I like Chicken Soup for the Dog Lover's Soul better than SD - if you check the ingredients there's no corn (hard to digest), wheat, soy, or protein by-products. That's how I personally gauge the quality of a food, besides how well my dogs do on it, of course.

 

I'm not 100% sure but I think it's comparable in price to the SD, if not less.

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You're right in that this topic has been discussed many times over. You can try the search function above to find previous threads. But just off the top of my head, here are some of the better foods out there:

 

Canidae

Wellness

Solid Gold

Chicken Soup for the Pet Lover's Soul

Natural Balance (available at PetCo)

Flint River Ranch

Innova

California Natural

Blackwood

 

(not an exclusive list, just off the top of my head)

 

In general, you should avoid foods that have by-products in them and try to find ones that use natural ingredients and include vitamins, chelated minerals (this means the mineral is wrapped in amino acids so the body can absorb it) and Essential Fatty Acids as well (also helps the body to absorb minerals and vitamins instead of passing them through).

 

Both Science Diet and Purina are high in by-products and fillers and will likely cause lots of stools. A high-quality diet (usually doesn't even cost that much more, if at all) will be more readily absorbed by the body, thus less poop to pick up! :rolleyes:

 

Look at the ingredients in the Science Diet, then go here for definitions of those ingredients:

http://www.mihog.org/diet/foodingredavoid.phtml

 

If you're really interested, read "Food Pets Die For" by Ann N. Martin. She researched rendering plants that produce the meat sources commonly used in most commercial pet foods. You can buy it on half.com here:

http://half.ebay.com/cat/buy/prod.cgi?cpid...=1856&meta_id=1

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I don't want to hijack this topic, but my young dog Luke and his "ALLERGIES" have had me trying a few different foods over the last 6-8 months. Right now he is eating Nutro lamb and rice, which I have heard is not as good as it used to be. I have tried Canidae, Wellness(the fish and sweet potato one) and Blue Buffalo. Yesterday at a "premium" local dog supply store I was told by the saleswoman to buy a certain food. It was full of corn. I said well I avoid corn due to possible allergies and she said "oh dogs don't have allergies to corn, just the pesticides and herbicides on it etc". Well the scientist in me really was put off by that. She also promoted a food called Canine Caviar. I am pretty tired of trying things now, so went back to Nutro and he is also on a prescribed antihistamine (not benadryl, it didn't do anything). This one is helping, the pill I mean, so we wait and see for a while.

Caroline

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Thanks for the input from everyone. I need to talk to my vet now that I've read whats been posted about SD. He is the one that recommended it. Of course that was several years ago and for our cats so maybe there is a difference??? Anyway, as fortune would have it Annie goes in for her boosters tomorrow and I'll see what he says. I need to go dig the bag out of my garbage to see the ingredients. What I bought this time was a new "Natural" brand of SD that I havn't tried before. (It was the only SD on the shelves at the time I was in and cost about $5 more than the regular 35 lb. bags I had been getting. Anyway, looks like I have some research ahead of me.

Caroline, don't worry about hijacking the thread, I was pretty sure this topic had come up before but I didn't readily find specific when I checked the Archives. I was interested in what you said about allergies. Annies buddy is a Shitzu (belongs to my mother in law but stays at our house. He has been diagnosed with alleries. Scratchies alot and the vet has recommended Benedryl when it get bad for him. I may suggest that my m-in-l try the Nuto.

Nestor.

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Talking to the Allergy Empress here. Shoshone has been thru testing, alternative therapies - accupuncture, homeopathy, chiropractic - 2 different doggy dermatologists, (the first one I was not at all impressed by, the 2nd one turned out to be our angel), just about a gazillion kinds of food, special baths, air filters, yada, yada, yada.

 

So here's what I can tell you:

Every dog is different, what works or didn't work for my dog may not or may work for your dog.

Every vet I went to said food allergies don't develop in dogs much after 2 yrs of age. Well, Shoshone's the exception to that. She's allergic to dairy, wheat and corn. We know this thru a strict elimination diet.

Fish oil and Vit E seem to help a very large number of dogs.

Since you're in Austin, you're pretty close to A&M. Call the vet school there and see if they've got a dermatologist on staff. Could be very, very helpful.

Shonie had developed a bacterial skin infection, due to all her itching. A month of cephalexin made a big difference. This was prescribed by our Allergy Angel, Dr. Nagel. He was the first of the 5! vets I've taken Shonie to who suggested this was a possibility.

Something we've started lately seems to be making a huge difference, Wellness puts out a supplement for skin health. I think it may have whipped Shonie's chronic yeast infection! Her ears don't smell anymore and her coat's not greasy. Wonders never cease!

 

I went to school at UT, graduated in 78. What a gorgeous place, would someday even like to consider living there again.

 

Ruth n the Border Trio

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oops that doesn't mean I am recommending Nutro for allergies, I don't think it is any special food, I just went back to it since my older dog did well with it and there were so MANY to pick from at the store. I agree that allergies can be so DIFFICULT to define and then treat. Luke is on ceph for the secondary skin infection, and taking now derm caps from the vet. I had a month of salmon oil and then a month of flaxseed oil. The antihistamine is hydroxizine pamoate and it has relieved most of the biting and itching. We are not even sure it is food, it may be contact/inhalation. Anyway, no dermatologist vets in this area. So we keep working on it. I commend you for working with Shoshone, she is lucky to have you helping her.

Caroline and Charlie and Luke

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I have a dog that is sensitive to flax! Just try to find a premium food that doesn't use some flax. I finally realized that he reacts more to the flax meal than just oil so we compromise there.

 

I can't wait to get my kitchen back so I can cook for my whole family again . . .

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I asked the same question several months ago. My Jazzy had allergy and scratching all the time. Her fur was dry and fuzzy. Stomach was sensitive and had diarrhea all the time. I switched to Chicken soup (after trying Innova - didn't work for her - too rich) and she is doing GREAT! It's available in my area, natural, she likes it, price is good and people here recommended it. Her fur is shiny, no more diarrhea, a lot less scratching and just overall healthier.

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Dare I say it but I was using Iams at first but the problem I ran into is that much else gives her horrible gas. To the point you don't want the poor thing around even. I didn't think that would even be from the ingrediants in the food that's cheep. We don't have the names of the other food you're mentioning around here. Besides stuff you find at the grocery store (i.e. purina, gravy train,) and Iams or SD. Next time We go to our petco Will check out stuff there. Thanks

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Most vets will recommend things like SD...they sell it in their stores and make money off it. Hmmmm,wonder why the are recomending it...

 

Anyway, on the topic of nutrition, we are own our own. Most vets recieve little to no nutritional education and when they do, it's provided by SD or Purina.

 

The Whole Dog Journal does a review of dry and canned foods every year. The list provided by one of the other posters pretty much mimics theirs. They did like the Chicken Soup for the Pet lovers Soul food.

 

I feed my dog raw. I also ended up feeding the BC I just lost raw because he would start throwing up after being on a kibble for about 4 months. He never did that when he was on raw. It does depend on the dog.

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Hi Guys

This dog food thing drives me nuts. I have 4 or 5 BC's who all have different issues. Some skinny, some overweight, some with hot spots, a puppy who I'm worried about growing to quickly.

What's a person to do without going broke figuring out this dog food issue.

I've tried raw and use allot of whole foods in their diets, but usually use kibble too.

I used Diamond for a long time but the hot spot dog wasn't doing good. So I opted for Nutro, she gets the diet kind. I try to keep her protein levels low as I wondered if that might have been promoting the hotspots. I use the regular not performance food for the rest just giving the skinny ones more. I've added glucosomine (sp?) in the evening feed and condrotion (sp?) in the am. I add fish oil caps (hubby's on them for heart issues so we buy the huge ecno size and share)

Recently one of the skinny ones started itching like crazy...I switched to the sensitive stomach one with oatmeal and chicken...hated that...they all looked bad (coats) so back to diamond...they all went on strike (even the puppy who eats anything) so I went and bought Nutro again and mixed the bags to get back to the normal diet.

I really think it's about experimenting till you find the right one for you and then tweaking it to the dogs issues.

I've decided the itchy one has some allergy issues from contact or inhaled stuff because I notice it's 2x's per year and always during high allergy warning time on the TV. I've been giving her benydril and it helps enough. She's already calmed down her itching as the weather is changing.

 

I'd switch to all natural and raw except I'm not finding that easy to get into routine. Plus I worry about not making it complete enough. SO...like I said...for me, it's finding what works for me.

I try not to read to much about all the nasty stuff they add to dog kibble...then I'm really dealing with my own guilt, as my human son eats a hotdog right out of the package...no quilt there? hmmmm....TMI!!(to much information!) :rolleyes:

 

I've been using a additive from a catalogue called Springtime, inc. Fresh Factors, they are inexpensive for what you get and all will eat the treats which have the condrotion for joint health. (do a google search) It also has bee pollen and they really talk that up. I get the Glucosime as a bulk powder for horses (cut the dose down for dog size) from the same place. Beats the $70 dollar price I was paying the vet for the stuff he recommended.

 

Go figure.... :D

Kristen

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